Home / World wide / TOGETHER AGAIN: Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin prove age just a number in ’80 For Brady’

TOGETHER AGAIN: Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin prove age just a number in ’80 For Brady’

After starring on TV’s Grace and Frankie for seven years, Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin wanted to keep a good thing going. This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below. We apologize, but this video has failed to load. TOGETHER AGAIN: Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin prove age just a number in ’80 For Brady’ Back to video We apologize, but this video has failed to load. So when they were approached to star in 80 For Brady, a movie about four seasoned gals who head out on a road trip to see NFL legend Tom Brady play in the Super Bowl, it was an easy yes.

From our newsroom to your inbox at noon, the latest headlines, stories, opinion and photos from the Toronto Sun. A welcome email is on its way. If you don’t see it, please check your junk folder. The next issue of Your Midday Sun will soon be in your inbox. We encountered an issue signing you up. Please try again “We don’t often get a chance to see older women loving football and sports,” Fonda, 85, says in a video call from Los Angeles. After an acting career that began with 1960’s Tall Story, the iconic actress also saw the film as a chance to attract a whole new audience. “I thought football fans don’t necessarily come to see my movies and maybe I’ll get to meet a whole new audience,” the Oscar winner adds with a smile.

Inspired by a true story, 80 for Brady follows four New England Patriots fans — played by Fonda, Tomlin, Sally Field and Rita Moreno — who headed out on a once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimage to watch Brady play at Super Bowl LI in 2017. Rita Moreno plays Maura, Jane Fonda plays Trish, Sally Field plays Betty, and Lily Tomlin plays Lou in 80 For Brady. Photo by Paramount Pictures As they make their way to the big game, which saw the Patriots win in historic fashion, the pals meet Billy Porter, Guy Fieri, Harry Hamlin and Brady’s former teammate, Rob Gronkowski. “I loved how this was based on real women from Boston,” Tomlin, 83, says. “I saw a video of the woman I portray, and I just loved her reaction. She was excited and over the moon that Tom Brady was talking to her and telling her he was going to make a movie about her and her girlfriends.

“Her reaction was so sweet and spontaneous and alive and I just wanted to be a part of it.” When Tomlin was told she was going to have a chance to work with Fonda again, she jumped at the chance. “She taught me to take a leap of faith on a project,” Tomlin says grinning. Rita Moreno, Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin and Sally Field in 80 For Brady. Photo by Paramount Pictures The pair, who first acted together in the 1980 comedy 9 to 5, will also appear later this year in Moving On, a dramedy that follows two estranged pals who reunite when a beloved mutual friend dies. “We just finished working together after seven years, but that wasn’t enough,” Fonda jokes. “I needed more.”

Gleefully bantering back and forth during an early evening Zoom call, Fonda and Tomlin spoke about their long-lasting friendship, career longevity and their next acts. Netflix’s Grace and Frankie opened the two of you up to a new generation of viewers in 2015. What was that like for you? Tomlin: “It was fabulous. Any time you can expand your audience, it’s great. I’ve done that through my career. I did Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In, then I did concerts on the side, and I got a hipper audience, then I was on The Magic School Bus. So there were a lot of characters and projects that I always had my hand in. This was right up my alley.”

Fonda: “Well, when you’re 85, you want younger audiences so they’ll be around ’til the end (laughs). The idea of being able to make another movie with my beloved partner and Sally Field and Rita Moreno, I thought it was too good to be true — and it was.” Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda speak at the world premiere opening night screening of “80 For Brady” during the 34th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival on Jan. 6, 2023. Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda speak at the world premiere opening night screening of “80 For Brady” during the 34th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival on Jan. 6, 2023. Photo by Vivien Killilea /Getty Images for Palm Springs International Film Society
You’ve been pals for over 40 years. What was the key to your relationship both on and off the screen?

That championship game between the Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons in 2017 saw New England mounting the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history. Do you remember watching it? Fonda: “There’s never been a Super Bowl like it. If you’re behind by as much as the Pats were, you do not come back.” Tomlin: “Someone gives the exact odds in the movie, but their chances were so minimal.” Lily, you have some scenes with Tom Brady. How is he as an actor? Tomlin: “He was wonderful. He’s a natural. He listened and he was just real. I totally believed him. He looks like a boy. He’s 40 years old, or at that time he was 40, you think of him of this perfect boy. I played him as my son … he needed a pep talk, and I gave it to him.”

I took my mom to see the movie and it has such a nice message about living each day to its fullest and never quitting. What do you hope audiences take away from 80 For Brady? Fonda: “It ain’t over ’til it’s over. That’s true of the game that we’re watching, that game certainly ended differently than we thought it would at the beginning. But it’s also true about women’s lives. We may be in our 80s, but it’s not over. We’re over the hill only to find that there are all these other marvellous hills and valleys to explore. Don’t give up.”

Tomlin: “I don’t know how you could say it much better than what Jane just said. But I like the idea that you’re over the hill and you see all these other wonderful vistas and opportunities.” was the key to your longevity? I look back at all the films and projects you both have been involved with and it’s not easy to maintain that continued success. Tomlin: “I think that selectivity was an important thing … We’ve also — Jane included — done so many different things. After a while, you just look back and it’s a long career. You don’t plan on it so much. You just live into it and it becomes a part of you.”

Fonda: “Live into it — I like that. There’s one thing that’s really key in all this, and that’s good health. When my father (Henry Fonda) died, he was almost 10 years younger than I am right now and it was five months after On Golden Pond. He seemed so old, and he really couldn’t have kept going because he was sick. We’re not sick, so even though we’re old we can keep going. … So how have we managed to do it over all this time? It’s because we’re healthy.” Ms. Fonda, you went viral for a clip in which you talked about making friends as you got older and how one of your old ex-husbands, Ted Turner, said that you can’t make friends after the age of 60. What was the key for you to developing these long-lasting relationships that you’ve had?

Fonda: “When I meet somebody that I find interesting I make a point of becoming their friend, which means pestering them, writing them, making them come out of their holes. Lily’s a little bit of a recluse and Sally’s a little bit of a recluse, but I just get them out. I just say, ‘C’mon, let’s go to dinner’ … Personally, for me, I ask myself: Are they someone I want to learn from? Is it someone that can teach me things? Are they somebody I can trust? And can they make me laugh? Because I have a hard time laughing.”


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